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-FARM-FACT-FRIDAY- How Does Cow Saliva Help the Grass Grow?

Updated: Jan 2, 2022


Just a heads up, today’s FFF might be a little on the technical side if you’re not a science nerd like we are, but we encourage you to check it out anyway. And if we lose you, the idea is that the saliva from cattle “feed” the grass and plants that they’re consuming and in turn, provide healthier plants that provide more nutrition to the cattle. Read on for the more “scientific” explanation….


Cattle saliva that is drooled onto the ground while they’re grazing has been associated with improved pastures. Turns out, the beneficial microbes in the saliva are thought to colonize on the soil where they're dripped and form symbiotic relationships with the plants near them. The microbes gather nutrients that plants can’t absorb on their own. The microbes, through internal processes, alter these nutrients, then excrete them in a plant-available form, thus feeding the plant. And when the plant is more nutritious, you can bet that the cattle eating it are benefiting too!


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